Lastega ja lastele

Auhinnaga „Lastega ja lastele“ täname ja tunnustame inimesi ja organisatsioone, kelle uued algatused või pikemaajaline tegevus on positiivselt mõjutanud laste ja perede käekäiku.
Tunnustusauhinna taotluste voor on avatud 15. aprillini.

Esita taotlus

"Guests" for life

In cooperation with the Mentor Programme, SEB Heategevusfond has for several years been organising “Smart Parent” trainings for the employees of SEB, in order to raise the level of their parenting competencies. There has been great interest towards the lectures – this shows consideration, sense of responsibility and readiness to love. Here are two sentiments on the topic of child rearing.

Triin Lumi

Valuable experience was shared at the Smart Parent training

I am a mother of three children. At some point, all parents are likely to discover that they are at their wits’ end when their children do not behave at all as expected. The parents themselves feel tired or fed up. I, too, have read a few books and instructive stories in magazines about raising children. At one point, however, reading about it did not cut it for me anymore. Clearly, every family finds its own ways of living with their children. The limits of one family may be too narrow for another: it may be entirely incomprehensible for someone else, for example, that I should allow my three-year-old son to choose his own pair of trousers and shirt. Reading theory can sometimes drive you to despair over your own inaptitude, even though mostly everything is just fine.

It is for this reason that I was more than happy to attend the Smart Parent training where you could talk openly and share experiences and where everyone was assured that everything was fine. I believe that many sighed a sigh of relief upon hearing that all children have their “quirks”. For me, sharing funny and also more serious anecdotes with one another really was valuable. Perhaps we as parents will now find it easier to stay calmer and look for the root cause of a problem. We all did admit that we have now begun to speak more with our children. We are taking a real interest in what they are thinking and who their friends are, and we are also talking about ourselves more. I no longer start a conversation with my eldest child with the question, “How was school?”. If I myself used to hate this question when I was in school, why should my child love it?

I would not go so far as to say that I had any particular eureka moments on those Monday nights; however, just as in your working life, so in your family life, too, it is a good idea every now and then to pause and review the basics, share experiences with others and sometimes pat yourself on the back in acknowledgment. The conversation about alcohol dependence, however, was very thought-provoking. After all, not many of us will admit to consuming alcohol excessively, yet alcohol consumption in Estonia is high. I came to the realisation that alcohol consumption is beginning from an increasingly younger age. Indeed, I came away with the knowledge that I should explain to my children about the harmfulness of alcohol by setting an example and also by having chats with them.
The lesson about the seven-year development cycle was really great; it provided clues as to what to expect at a given age bracket. For example, in some sense my 3- and 8-year-old children are at the same level in the development of their feelings and needs. Or, my 5-year-old has come to believe that she is alone in the world and may feel sad because of it. Everyone must have been thinking where they are themselves on their development spiral.

In any event, those were great Monday nights, and I am really glad that they are being organised. Thanks a lot, SEB Charity Fund!

Tatiana G.

Children need a sense of closeness and love from us

When I did not have any children yet, I used to think what could be so complicated about raising children. Just raise them the way you would raise puppies: at the beginning you have to lay some ground rules, and then everything will fall into place. When my first child was born, the first couple of weeks I had the feeling that my husband and I had to be quiet as mice as our guest was still asleep, and it seemed that that “guest” would now stay to live with us for life...

I also remember the feeling when I would go round with my first daughter in a push chair on the roads near our home: look, this is my child, and I myself gave birth to her! Perhaps this story is getting too personal, but together with our children we ourselves, too, grow and become smarter and receive from them, every now and then, answers to questions that we are hard put to answer ourselves.

Every Monday this spring, the Smart Parent training at SEB included lectures from which I tried to salt away something every time. The training was really useful and provided plenty of food for thought. It stuck in my mind when the lecturer said that a two-year old child is indeed a very small person but harbours as many feelings and emotions as a big one. I think of those words when my child throws a tantrum on the ground, not happy with something, yet again. Another smart thought voiced was the insight that a child will have a fit of bad temper when she or he is feeling secure. Usually, it happens after getting home from kindergarten or a long, tiring day (at school) and, above all else, when the mother or father is present. I suppose I will be letting my child have her fit of temper, stay beside her and show that I understand her feelings, helping her spate of feelings to dissipate. Every now and then, we all have days when we feel like crying or having a fit of temper. But it really is no great feeling when a fellow worker comes to ease your distress by saying, It’s okay, it’ll pass for sure...

There are many other simple things that had never occurred to me before. For example, we were grocery-shopping with our children, and our elder daughter announced that I had never bought her children’s sparkling wine and that I should, for once, do it, with Mother’s Day just around the corner. I myself had been thinking, too, that I always forget to buy sparkling wine for the children but that it belongs with the children’s birthdays and how much they like that moment when the cork pops. So, that day we did buy children’s sparkling wine – with princess pictures on it. At the training the following Monday, we had a lecture about dependence, and the subject of alcohol came up during the discussion. The lecturer told us how children copy us in everything and how important a role a parent has in preventing her or his child becoming dependent on alcohol or anything else. I raised my hand and confessed that I had bought my child sparkling wine with princess pictures on it just that weekend. I found out that girls older than 14 are the target group struggling under the stranglehold of the highest percentage of dependence habits and that for them the parent’s role of supporting and explaining is very important. A parent has an important role to play both by providing explanations and by setting an example. An attitude of indifference may leave a mark for life.

Being a good parent does not mean buying your child those things that others have: so you do not have to celebrate your child’s birthday necessarily with children’s sparkling wine only for the reason that all other children mark their birthday with that princess beverage...

Now when I go to the shop, I notice more young families with children where the father puts a few beers and the mother a cider next to the milk in the shopping basket. It is weird to hear a little boy remind his father, “Daddy, you forgot to get your beers”.

Happy parenting and enjoy your summer break!

Evelin A.

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